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Similarities to the Covid lockdown: Bonn Players perform Sartre's “No exit" at the Brotfabrik

Similarities to the Covid lockdown : Bonn Players perform Sartre's “No exit" at the Brotfabrik

The English-language ensemble Bonn Players is currently performing Sartre's play “No exit" at the Beueler Brotfabrik. It contains astonishing similarities to the coronavirus lockdown.

Three people, two women and one man, are at each other's mercy, for better or worse, with no hope of an end - because they are already dead, locked in a room in hell, tormenting each other with their life lies. This is how Jean-Paul Sartre's "No Exit" can be briefly described. With this philosophical one-act play, the "Bonn Players" celebrate their return to the stage and their 40th anniversary after the forced hiatus due to the lockdown.

Audiences can draw parallels between Sartre's play and the Covid lockdown

"Today's audiences can most likely relate to many of the central themes and questions of this play through the experience of having been in lockdown because of the Covid-19 pandemic," says Katie Jordans. Whether lockdown or quarantine, she says, people were forced to be in a room they couldn't leave. "And who among us didn't lose track of time at some point during that period?" There are many parallels to the characters in the play, she says, not the least of which is the effort to exercise "social distance" - Sartre's phrase "Hell is - other people!” from the play resonates.

There are also differences: While the characters are eternally trapped in their space, we can still hope for a return to normalcy. Jordans: "The question we face as we approach the return to normalcy is: 'Are we going to take advantage of the opportunities we now have to change our lives on a personal and societal level?' Or will we allow ourselves to fall back into the same old traps?’"

"No exit" will be performed at the Beueler Brotfabrik from November 9 to 13.

At any rate, the Bonn Players hope to give their audience at the Beuel Brotfabrik some food for thought. The English-language ensemble started in 1981 as "The British Embassy Players" and since then has brought a variety of works to the stage - from Shakespeare classics to plays by contemporary playwrights such as Peter Quilter.

"No Exit" will run Tuesday, Nov. 9, through Saturday, Nov. 13, at the Brotfabrik, Kreuzstrasse 16, Beuel. Performances begin at 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays, and at 6 p.m. on Saturdays. The production is directed by Nikesh Trecarten. The four actors, Michael Odebrecht, Carlo Borreo, Munira Abbas and Lisa Pohlers, are all on stage for the Bonn Players for the first time. Tickets are available at www.bonnticket.de. The usual corona rules apply.

Orig. text: Stefan Knopp

Translation: ck